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Caribbean Marine Biodiversity


The Caribbean flora and fauna is well represented in the collections of Naturalis because of an historical presence by the Netherlands.

Four workers in the group have a focus on this area researching marine invertebrates. Aspects of coral reef health are researched through associations between coral hosts and invertebrate symbionts; species communities through discovery of new species, new localities and identification of invasive species; palaeoenvironmental issues through fossil sea urchins and sea stars; and subterranean island fauna evolution through interstitial invertebrates in marine sand and terrestrial groundwater.

The symbiotic shrimp Pseudopontonides principis (Criales, 1980) on black coral. Curaçao, photo C.H.J.M. Fransen, 2013.